Engage More and Improve Your Social Media Marketing

Updated 23 November 2017

Spend Less Time Publishing Content!

Consulting clients and those who have had an opportunity to hear me speak know I am far less concerned about consistency in posting new content to pages and profiles than I am with being consistently engaged.

Publishing new content is vital. Done right it will help develop and nurture relationships, it establishes authority, and drives action. The flaw in our thinking is that our published content is the most important aspect of social media marketing.

News flash. It’s SOCIAL media, not broadcast media. Approaching social sites like you would traditional channels will not work. The algorithms reward social behavior. ‘Reach’ is down. Published content does not create visibility (and the type which does, usually does little to establish authority or drive action – with some exceptions like this article on body image).

Unless you want to ‘pay to play’ (a bad idea as a core strategy as the split second you choose to stop paying the game is over), you need to create visibility in a different way. I suggest you spend more time being social.

Engage. Interact. Be Social.

Think about your behavior in the real world. What do you do, as a business owner, to get your brand known? Aside from advertising, you network. Ask yourself, how many networking groups do you attend? And if you stopped going?

The same applies to social media. You cannot simply publish content and pay for ads if you want a successful social media marketing campaign which measurable converts.

They’re about creating engagement and social interaction.

Ideally, you want it to occur on your content yet, that’s not the reality for a small business. Stop fighting to make that happen. What if you simply started to engage with the content of others?  Things happen when you do.

You become visible. Sitting back and publishing content to your pages will not get you seen (again, the damn, ever-changing algorithms). Engaging where others are, does. This is why we attend networking groups and events – to get in front of our audience, not passively wait for them to see our ‘ads’ and come to us. Sitting on your ass will get you nowhere.

You create opportunities.  If you want something, you need to make it happen. Being active and engaged is the best way to find and create opportunities.

You drive attention back to your content. Simple psychology. (channeling Wade Harman here). If you add a great, value-added comment, you will get noticed. Do it well, and often enough, you’ll pique someone’s interest. They will look at your profile or page. If you establish a practice of doing this on multiple pages, interacting as your page, you will see a significant increase in page views.

Think about how you behave on Facebook.

When you get to a new page for the first time, so you only read one post? No! And the better the content, the more you will continue reading and the more likely you’ll interact or follow a link.

Quality comments will get you and your core content seen. At the minimum, it provides for the opportunity.

How Well Does it Work?

Scrolling through my LinkedIn feed, I came across this post from April Torrestorija. April owns Noire & Jet Coffee, a subscription-based coffee company (and pardon me for being a coffee snob – it’s pretty damn good coffee at a great price!)

Linkedin post by April Torrestorija owner of noire jet coffee

Create conversation

While it’s the type of post most LinkedIn purists hate, I thought it was funny and added a smart ass comment. April responded and we had a conversation.

Private LinkedIn conversation with April Torrestorija or Noire & Jet Coffee

The resulting interaction piqued my curiosity (normally it works the other way). I took the opportunity to learn more about April.

April is in Tucson, AZ. An opportunity trigger for me. Something I could use to further build a relationship with April, having spent 23 years in Tucson. I sent her a private message.

A simple smart ass comment grew a relationship, provided a resource for someone else, and could generate business.

The best part….. It took less than 5 minutes on my feed!  (there’s a method to who I follow and why.) That is a far cry from the time involved to create and publish new content.

This is not an isolated experience

Deborah Olive of Deborah Olive Consulting attended one of our LinkedIn workshops. I discussed this concept as part of the class. Deborah listened and put it into practice for herself. Within a couple of weeks, she created an opportunity for using my approach:

Deborah Olive of Olive Global SOULutions, LLC's experience generating opportunities on LinkedIn through engagement, not content

Deborah’s simple ‘like’ and comment opened up a relationship opportunity and the potential for business at a local networking event because she was active, visible and engaged. The opportunity was not created by content published on her profile.

Publish Less, Interact More

If you are listening to all of the so-called experts preaching content first, stop and ask yourself how much time and effort are you putting in and what are you getting in return?

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Original publish date 20 September 2016

16 replies
  1. james
    james says:

    Really nice blog. I really enjoyed it. Will definitely implement these thing in my social media strategy.

  2. Adam Fout
    Adam Fout says:

    The problem I always have is that I think in terms of content creation — I have to get stuff out the door and on the page or it doesn’t “look good.”

    And I know that’s just the wrong attitude, but it seems pretty ingrained in many of us.

    It’s such a hard concept to wrap your head around, I think, because, from the moment you log in to ANY social media site, you’re inundated with other people’s posts.

    It only seems reasonable that you should follow suit and post your own content.

    But, when it comes to content that other people are posting, it’s rarely the original post that’s interesting to me — the comments are often much more interesting, or funny, or whatever.

    The comments are what I think a lot of us really dig into posts for, and if you leave an awesome comment on someone’s post (or not necessarily even an awesome comment, but even a correction if something is incorrect), it draws the eye, the attention, and as you’ve said throughout the post, possibly even the beginning of a relationship.

    Thanks for another great post Robert — sorry I missed this like 87 years ago.

    • Robert Nissenbaum
      Robert Nissenbaum says:

      No worries on the tardiness Adam. That’s life!

      I love this “…it’s rarely the original post that’s interesting to me — the comments are often much more interesting, or funny, or whatever.” It’s the comments that drive interaction and have the power to connect people. Good content serves to bring them together.

  3. katrinamchua
    katrinamchua says:

    This is a very good advise! The problem is there are plenty of companies out there who insist on shoving sales pitches and posting content rather then talking with people and engaging. The more effective you are at engaging with consumers, the more successful you will be at growing your subscriber rate, which in turn will help provide you with more leads to conversions. Thanks for this advice, such powerful!

  4. Tess Wittler (@TessWittler)
    Tess Wittler (@TessWittler) says:

    Conversations via social media networks have yielded some of the best relationships in business for me. Every time I get busy and can only focus on connecting (and not creating new content), it still pays returns. Plus, it’s nice to have conversations with new folks. Thanks for the reminder, Robert.

    • Robert Nissenbaum
      Robert Nissenbaum says:

      My problem has been the same…. little time to focus on new content. That social interaction still provides a way to provide value and you’re right…. it’s just nice to have some conversations and meet new people.

  5. Clement Lim
    Clement Lim says:

    Hi Robert

    I enjoyed the case studies you gave demonstrating the power of engagement. They attest to the effectiveness of your methods.

    I agree that when you’re starting out, your website is going to be a low traffic platform. Commenting on the content of more established brands allows you to be seen on higher traffic platforms. And if you can approach commenting as a form of branded content, you can draw traffic back to your main platform.

    I’ve just been offered a guest posting opportunity using a similar approach.


    • Robert Nissenbaum
      Robert Nissenbaum says:

      Clement, thank you. Your guest posting opportunity is further proof that my methods work. It’s a simple concept that bloggers have used or years and the rest of us business folks could do well to use on social platforms.



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